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The Laker-East Pasco-August 7, 2019

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The LAKERee r FEAST PASCO EDITIONLAKERLUTZNEWS.COMAuto Accident? Slip and Fall? FREE CONSULTATIONNo Fees Or Costs Unless You Win HOLLIDAY KARATINOSAU G U S T 7 , 2 0 1 9‘Engage’ kids: Improve attendanceBy B.C. Manion bcmanion@lakerlutznews.comStudents typically don’t decide to drop out of school overnight. And, there’s typically more to the story, when a student starts missing school on a regular basis. At least those were a couple points of discussion last week during a Pasco CountySchool Board workshop on the topic of school attendance. “Attendance is really a symptom of something else that is happening with our students,” said Angel Hernandez, senior supervisor of student support programs and services for the district. Pasco County has been working to define what on-track, at-risk and off-track means, in terms of attendance, behavior, aca-demic performance and discipline. In high school, the measures include GPA and progress of meeting graduation requirements. The reasons students miss school can vary from being ill, to being on vacation, to choosing not to be there because they are disengaged, Hernandez told school board See ATTENDANCE, page 11ALAW FIRM, PLLC HelpingInjuredPeople.com Call AttorneyJIM HOLLIDAY “I Will Aggressively Fight To Protect Your Legal Rights”813-868-1887 OR352-597-0009Get all your favorite local news stories online.CHRISTINE HOLTZMANA fun day at Zephyr Park Dozens of families braved the heat and humidity on a recent Sunday afternoon to have some fun at Zephyr Park, 38116 Fifth Ave., in Zephyrhills. The vast 34-acre venue features a waterpark, walking trails, a lake for fishing, tennis courts, picnic shelters and playground equipment. Many areas of the park are shaded by large, Civil War-era oak trees. Above, Brooke Vanderhoeven, of Zephyrhills, center, sits on top of the jungle gym with her two daughters, 13-year-old Chloe Castleberry, left, and 6-year-old Emma Braddam, during a recent family outing at Zephyr Park. Their afternoon of fun began at the waterpark, before they made their way to the playground.lakerlutznews.com LOCAL WILDLIFESTEFANIE BURLINGAME/STAFF PHOTOShare your wildlife photos If you’ve captured a photograph of an interesting bird or wild creature, we’d love to share your image with our readers.If you’d like us to consider publishing your photograph, please email it to us at news@lakerlutznews.com. Please be sure to include what kind of animal it is, and where you took the picture. Also include your contact information, so we can get in touch with you, if we need to.B INSIDE, PAGE 1BAfter getting the courage to stand on the top of the spiral ladder, 4year-old Siyanni Alexander, of Dade City, holds on tight as she looks down at her grandfather, Brian Hecker, for encouragement. The pair was enjoying the day at the park, while Siyanni’s mother was at home, recovering from a recent surgery.Pasco police help kids start school year in styleAfter an afternoon of splashing around the waterpark, Cindy Reeves, of Zephyrhills, center, shares a picnic snack with four of her 14 grandchildren. From left: 2-year-old Talon Bowman, 6-yearold Wyatt Gillman, 1-year-old Emma Bowman, Cindy Reeves and 4-year-old Weston Bowman.Teen selected as Shriners ambassador By Kevin Weiss kweiss@lakerlutznews.comEleven-year-old Jayden Boykin made his way from one aisle to the next, as he went shopping for school clothes with his new buddy – Officer Troy Fulford of the Dade City Police Department. The police officer and fifth-grader were on a mission, to make sure Jayden will look fashionable for his first day back at Rodney B. Cox Elementary School. The pair was among those taking part in the second annual Summer Shop with a Cop event that brought 18 local kids and Dade City police officers together to select new school gear, on Aug. 2. At the Dade City Walmart on U.S. 301, the police officers pushed shopping carts — fol-Zoe Spanos doesn’t let her physical challenges define her, but manages to thrive instead. The 15-year-old Lutz teenager, who has cerebral palsy, lives life like many teens. The rising Steinbrenner High School sophomore is a straight A student and a dedicated member of JROTC and HOSA-Future Health Professionals. She’s also a fitness buff — into cross training, weightlifting and nutrition. Lately, she’s tried her hand at golf — a game introduced to her by her grandparents. She’s set her sights on making the Steinbrenner girls golf team this season. Due to her physical limitations, Zoe employs an unconventional golf stance and swing, which focuses more on generating power from the right side of her body. She takes weekly lessons with local golf instructor Andrew Dawes.See POLICE, page 11ASee SHRINERS, page 11ABy Brian Fernandes bfernandes@lakerlutznews.comCOURTESY OF SHRINERS HOSPITALS FOR CHILDREN-TAMPALutz teenager Zoe Spanos, who has cerebral palsy, is an avid golfer. The 15-year-old Steinbrenner High School student has been named one of 22 patient ambassadors throughout the country to represent the Shriners Hospitals for Children at the 2019 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.ACCOUNTANT BUSINESS / INDIVIDUAL • Tax Planning Preparation • Tax Resolution• Start Up Counseling • BookkeepingAre you having problems with the IRS?Give me a call. Nils R. Lenz, MBA813-782-9491ENROLLED AGENT • QUALIFIED TO PRACTICE BEFORE THE IRSB&N L ENZ ENTERPRISES 39104 3rd Avenue, Zephyrhills, FL 33542 Keep your car looking great. Basic Wash • Wash & Wax • Full Detail • Home Pressure Washing Also Available MOBILE DETAILING$55.00$65.00WASH & WAXHEADLIGHT RESTORATION$75 Valueup to $100 ValueCall Curtis for Appointment813.347.0502Donate A Boat or Car Today!“2-Night Free Vacation!”800 - 700 - BOAT (2628) (2628)www.boatangel.com sponsored by boat angel outreach centers2AAugust 7, 2019STOP CRIMES AGAINST CHILDRENwww.LakerLutzNews.comCOURTESY OF THE BENEDICTINE SISTERS OF FLORIDASister Mildred Gelis, OSB, enjoyed riding her scooter around the Saint Leo University campus, and was known for her knack for maintaining machinery.Sister Mildred enjoyed ‘tinkering’ with machinery The Laker/Lutz News Staff ReportSister Mildred Gelis, OSB, was known for motoring around Saint Leo University on her little scooter. When her scooter failed her, her mechanical skills went to work — to get it running again. She also was known to have a knack for maintaining cars, helping to keep costs down for her community of the Benedictine Sisters of Florida, who live in Holy Name Monastery in St. Leo. These are among the memories of Sister Mildred shared in a news release from the Benedictine Sisters of Florida, who also announced her passing, which occurred on July 26. Sister Mildred was born on June 28, 1925, and grew up in Slidell, Louisiana. She is survived by her Benedictine Sisters community, and several nieces and nephews, including Michael and Cynthia Lewis. She attended public school, and when Our Lady of Lourdes School opened, the Gelis children went there. Our Lady of the Lourdes was staffed by the Benedictine Sisters from Holy Name, in Florida, and although she was very young, Sister Mildred became convinced she wanted to become a nun. So, after her high school graduation in June of 1942, she left home and received her training as a Sister in the Order of St. Benedict at Holy Name in St. Leo.She then attended Mount St. Scholastica College, Atchison, Kansas. Sister Mildred received her undergraduate degree from Loyola University, in New Orleans, and a graduate degree in Theology from St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota. She taught in parochial schools in Ocala, Jacksonville Beach and Sarasota. She also taught at a little rural public school in St. Joseph, where she taught a combined class of first, second, third and fourth grades. After 31 years of teaching and leadership positions, she retired in 1981. That retirement was short-lived. Sister Mildred decided to return to school to learn printing; after that, she went to work for Saint Leo University, eventually running its Copy Center. Although she loved the work, she did say “the pressure of meeting deadlines could get hectic at times,” according to the release. Her other roles in service in her community included Scholastic Mistress, sub-prioress, and councilor. She also volunteered for a number of years on the St. Leo town commission. Sister Mildred was remembered in a vigil and a Mass of the Resurrection last weekend. Anyone wishing to honor Sister Mildred can direct donations in her memory to Benedictine Sisters of Florida, P.O. Box 2450, St. Leo, FL 33574; BenedictineSistersOfFl.org.Pasco Schools budget nearly $1.4 billion By B.C. ManionHighlights of the proposed budget include a 3 percent increase for district employees and a 5 percent increase in costs for insurance benefits, as the district continues to cover 100 percent of the cost of employee insurance premiums. The district also plans to increase its staff by 35.4 positions at the school level and 5.6 positions at the district level. The largest appropriations in its capital budget include the remodeling and renovation of Zephyrhills High School; the construction of Cypress Creek Middle School; the construction of Starkey K-8; new classroom wings at Sunlake High and Bexley Elementary; and design work for a new magnet technical high school on the east side of the county. The budget also includes a long list of maintenance projects and purchases, including the lease/purchase of computers and buses. And, includes the completion of the renovation/remodeling of Land O’ Lakes High School, which is almost finished. No one spoke during the public comment portion of the public hearing, which was the first of two required public hearings. The second has been scheduled for Sept. 17 at 6 p.m., in the school board room at the district’s administrative complex, at 7227 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., in Land O’ Lakes.bcmanion@lakerlutznews.comThe Pasco County School Board has approved a tentative budget approaching $1.4 billion for the coming fiscal year. Pasco County Superintendent Kurt Browning covered highpoints of the proposed budget at last week’s Pasco County School Board meeting, before the board approved the tentative budget and tentative tax rate. The new fiscal budget of $1,392,942,266 is an increase of $131.7 million over last year, Browning said. It includes a general operating budget of $664.5 million and a capital budget of $339.1 million, according to district figures. The proposed tax millage rate for 20192020 fiscal year is 6.101 mills, which is a decrease of 0.178 mills. Under the proposed rate, a homeowner of a $175,000 home, after the deduction of the $25,000 homestead exemption, would pay $26.70 less than they did last year, Browning said. The district received additional funds totaling more than $27.8 million, to accommodate projected growth of 1,294 students and recurring expenses, the superintendent said.FILEThis photo, submitted by George O’ Connor at the beginning of last school year, shows Julia O’ Connor on the first day of school, when she was a first-grader at Sand Pine Elementary School, in Wesley Chapel.Send us your First Snag a pass to children’s museum Day of School photosBy Mary Rathmanconnect to the world around them to develop as lifelong learners and leaders.” The pass is available on a first-come, firstserved basis, and is good for free admission for up to five guests. It can only be used once within the seven-day checkout period. Blackout dates at the museum and other restrictions may apply. The museum is at 110 W. Gasparilla Plaza in downtown Tampa. To learn more about the nonprofit, visit GlaserMuseum.org. Reserve the Museum Pass in person at any Pasco County Library, or online at bit.ly/GCMPass.mrathman@lakerlutznews.comPasco County Libraries has your ticket for free, family friendly fun at the Glazer Children’s Museum, a nonprofit, hands-on, interactive learning center. The museum offers 19 themed areas and 170 exhibits, annually. And, according to its website, guests can “Play with purpose at the Glazer Children’s Museum,Tampa’s interactive, learning laboratory where children play, discover, andSUMMER SAVINGS!The Laker/Lutz News Staff ReportSchools across The Laker/Lutz News coverage area are ringing in a new academic year — and along with that comes traditional First Day of School photos. The photos that parents, grandparents, friends and other relatives take on that first day are a fun way to mark a new year of learning. Plus, they’re like tiny time capsules, capturing a moment and recording changes inHEARING LOSS L IS TR REA ATABLEGET THE UBER EATS AND SLICE APPS! KIDS EAT FREE ALL DAY MONDAYIt’’ss just a dog-gone shame so man nyy are inconvenienced d because of it. Let the pros at JC Audiolog A gyy help!Dine in only. One child per adult.TUESDAY, THURSDAY AND SUNDAYWEDNESDAY AND SUNDAYMONDAY AND WEDNESDAYCALL FOR A COM MPLIMENTTARY HEARING CONSULLTA TATION TOD DA AY. Y.$5.99 $10.95 $8.95 SPAGHETTI OR ZITI with one topping21501 Village Lakes Center Land O’ Lakes, FL 34639(813) 949-7484 PizzaVillaLOL.comheight, hair styles and fashion over time. We’d love to share your First Day of School photos with our readers. Please email your .jpegs, along with a brief description of where the photo was taken, who is in in it (from left to right) and the community where you live. Please also share the grade level and age of the student, and a number where you can be reached, if we have any questions. Send in your photos by Aug. 16 to news@lakerlutznews.com.Tell them Fi Te Fidoo sent you.LASAGNA GREEK STYLE CHICKEN$10.95 with saladANY GREEK $2.00 OFF * ENTREE Baked Chicken, Stuffed Pepper & Tomato, Gyro, Briam, Mousaka, Dolmades, Spanakopita, Souvlaki, Large Greek Salad w/Potato Salad *Cannot be combined with other offers. One coupon per ticket/table. Expires 8/31/19.D i n e i n - Ta k e O u T - D r i v e T h r u - C aT e r i n gfloor d the e’ meon o s ‘ e us e beca ear m dn’t h did g erin whimp side! out to go1519 Dale Mabry M Hwy. Suite 1055 • Lutz(813)94 49-1331 Here for you. Heaar for everryyonee.The LAKER / Lutz NEWSLUTZ, ODESSA, LAND O’ LAKES, WESLEY CHAPEL, NEW TAMPA, ZEPHYRHILLS, DADE CITY Serving Pasco since 1981 / Serving Lutz since 1964 PUBLISHER & OWNER: DIANE KORTUS, dkortus@lakerlutznews.com EDITORIALSALESDESIGNB.C. MANION, Editor bcmanion@lakerlutznews.comTERRI WILLIAMSON, Sr. Acct. Mgr. twilliamson@lakerlutznews.comMATTHEW MISTRETTA, Art Director mmistretta@lakerlutznews.comKEVIN WEISS, Staff Writer kweiss@lakerlutznews.comJEAN CALDWELL, Account Manager jcaldwell@lakerlutznews.comSTEFANIE BURLINGAME, Graphic Designer sburlingame@lakerlutznews.comBRIAN FERNANDES,Staff Writer bfernandes@lakerlutznews.comBETH ROSS, Account Manager bross@lakerlutznews.comACCOUNTINGMARY RATHMAN, Editorial Assistant mrathman@lakerlutznews.comRACHEL THOMPSON, Class & Dir Sales rthompson@lakerlutznews.comCHRISTINE HOLTZMAN, Photographer choltzman@lakerlutznews.comCAROLYN BENNETT, Customer Service cbennett@lakerlutznews.comLOCATION: 3632 Land O' Lakes Blvd. Suite 102 • Land O’ Lakes, FL 34639 MAIL: P. O. Box 479 • Lutz, FL 33548 PHONE/FAX: ph: 813.909.2800 • fax: 813.909.2802 IT SUPPORT: STEVE MISTRETTA#14MARY EBERHARD meberhard@lakerlutznews.comBREAKF FA AST & LUNCH SER RV VED ALL DA AY YWEBSITE: www.lakerlutznews.com FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/lakerlutznews TWITTER: www.twitter.com/lakerlutznews EMAIL: news@lakerlutznews.com • sales@lakerlutznews.comCall or Stop by Toda o y! ySUBSCRIPTIONS: Mail subscriptions are sold to cover postage cost: $40/3 months, $80/6 months, $160/12 months. DELIVERY PROBLEMS: If you do not receive your paper, or want to stop home delivery, call 813-948-5237. Or go to www.lakerlutznews.com, select Circulation request and complete “Opt Out” form. ADDITIONAL COPIES: A listing of boxes and business locations is on our home page at www.lakerlutznews.com. EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS: Suggestions for stories and news coverage are welcome. Please send ideas to news@lakerlutznews.com, or call our newsroom at 813-909-2800. ADVERTISING ERRORS: Publisher is not responsible for errors in advertising beyond the space cost for the first insertion, or for the validity of claims made by advertisers. Advertising and editorial content ©2019 by Manatee Media Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part is forbidden without prior written permission from the publisher.21519 Village Lakes Sho opping Center Drive (across the street e t from Lowes) 813-510-3869 • breakfasttstationcentral.comLicensed,, Bonded & Insured #CAC1813676 | CFC1429475Keeping You & Your Wallet MAINTA INPLUMBING INSPECTIONINCLUDES :69MOST COMFORTABLE!$- Inspect Safety Features - Dye Testing Toilets - Inspect Exposed Pipes - Inspect Sink Drains - Inspect Shut-Off Valves - Water Heater Flush And MoreMUST PRESENT COUPON AT TIME OF SERVICE Not available for same-day or weekend service. Not a repair service. Cannot be combined with any other o ffer. Not a vailable on past services. See dealer for details. LKRQRT0619Cannot be combined with any other offer. Not available with Clean & Tune or Drain-line Service. See dealer for details.MUST PRESENT COUPON AT TIME OF SERVICEIERNA’s Heating & Cooling | 813-948-6355Coupon Code: LKRQRT0619PLUMBINGCoupon Code: LKRQRT0619MAINTAIN - REPAIR - REPLACEFind information about active Rebates & other Special Offers online at Mobile Home Package Unit Experts813-773-6355 www.LakerLutzNews.comAugust 7, 20193AWhat’s HappeningYour Community Calendar • Submit 2 weeks in advance to: news@lakerlutznews.com • All listings free of chargeFASHION SHOW FUNDRAISERphoto challenge to practice what is taught. Registration is required by calling (813) 929-1214.The Medical Center of Trinity Volunteers’ annual Fashion Show Dinner and Fundraiser will take place Aug. 8 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., at Spartan Manor, 6121 Massachusetts Ave., in New Port Richey. There will be a silent auction, door prizes, raffles and share-the-wealth drawings.All proceeds will benefit the MCT Volunteers Medical Scholarship Fund.Tickets are $35 per person. For advance tickets, call Judi Geller at (727) 494-7400.LEARN TO CODEThe New River Library, 34043 State Road 54 in Wesley Chapel, will host a Teen Try It Tuesday on Aug. 13 at 4 p.m., for grades six to 12. Participants can learn to code using basic python in this one-hour class. For information, call (813) 788-6375.NATIVE PLANT SOCIETYDOMINOES FINALEThe Nature Coast Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society will meet on Aug. 13 at 7 p.m., at Land O’ Lakes Heritage Park, 5401 Land O’ Lakes Blvd.A nature film, “Sex, Lies and Butterflies,” will be shown. There will be light refreshments and a native plant drawing. For information, call Sandy Vanno at (727) 207-1853.The Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will host a summer finale of dominoes on Aug. 8 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. For information, call (813) 929-1214.REPUBLICAN CLUBThe Wesley Chapel Republican Club will meet on Aug. 8 at 6:30 p.m., at Wesley Chapel Toyota, 5300 Eagleston Blvd., second floor. Refreshments will be served. For information, call Peter Cracchiolo at (813) 360-9813.LEARNING ADVENTUREThe Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will host Learning Adventures: Hop & Bop on Aug. 8 at 10 a.m., for children ages 3 to 5, with a parent or caregiver.This is an early learning program that focuses on music to learn sounds in words, and social interaction.The theme will be pets. For information, call (813) 780-0064.AFTERNOON MOVIEThe Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will present the movie,“The Post,” on Aug. 8 from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. The film stars Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, and is rated PG-13. Refreshments will be provided. For information, call (813) 929-1214.BOOK BAZAARThe Hugh Embry Library, 14215 Fourth St., in Dade City, will host a Book Bazaar on Aug. 9 and Aug. 10 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be a diverse selection of books, audio and video media, magaz
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